Tag Archives: My Inspiration

My Inspiration for September 2022

30 Sep

This September I really enjoyed reading Paula Hawkins’ novel “The Girl on the Train” and watching the film adaptation starring Emily Blunt as the main character Rachel. Rachel is a miserable drunkard called who pretends to still have a job (which she lost because of drinking…) and through the window of the train she watches people in their houses, and she imagines what their lives must be like, how happy they all must be… And she is also often found stalking her ex-husband and there is a surprising twist in the end which I will not reveal. I can relate to Rachel because I also love watching people from the train and I wonder about their life, and my ‘people watching’ is usually accompanied with a constant longing and envy that their lives are more thrilling than my own is. I also watched a South-Korean thriller called “Midnight” (2021) which I, surprisingly, enjoyed. I loved discovering the rainy day scenes in art, spooky paintings by Leon Spilliaert and Serafino Macchiati, circus scenes in art, I had fun rereading Anais Nin’s Journal of Love…

“Give me a few days of peace in your arms. I need it terribly. I’m ragged, worn, exhausted. After that I can face the world.”

(Henry Miller, From a letter to Anais Nin, featured in A Literate Passion: Letters of Anais Nin & Henry Miller, 1932-1953)

“You were a dream. Then a reality. Now a memory.”
(Iain Thomas)

Marine Vatch photographed by Cédric Klapisch for Madame Le Figaro (2011)

Picture found here.

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nimue smit shot by venetia scott for orla kiely

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The Lovely Omens Tarot Deck from Keely Elle Art

shore of my life | © víctor m. alonso

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My Inspiration for August 2022

31 Aug

This August I very much enjoyed rediscovering some wonderful and underappreciated seascapes by the Romantic painter John Constable, and also many other beach scenes by artists such as Maurice Prendergast, Eugene Boudin and Philip Wilson Steer… As you may have seen in my book review, I read Shirley Jackson’s novel “We Have Always Lived in the Castle” and I thought it was amazing, I also read and enjoyed Stephen King’s novel “It”, John Ajvide Lindquist’s vampire-novel “Let the Right One In”, Jack Kerouac’s “Dharma Bums”, poems by Edna St. Vincent Millay and Tennessee Williams. I’ve had moments of great inspiration, particularly for collages and playing with words, but also moments of intense waves of inexplicable sadness. I am now assured that Kierkegaard is right when he says; “do it or do not do it – you will regret both”, for which ever thing I choose in life, misery seems to come along with it. A desire fulfilled is always tinged with a regret for something else and a longing for something that’s lost. My biggest discovery this month is surely the Cannadian singer-songwriter Michelle Gurevich and her songs “Lovers Are Strangers” and “The First Six Months of Love” which I absolutely adore.

“Life was then brilliant; I began to learn to hope and what brings a more bitter despair to the heart than hope destroyed?”

(Mary Shelley, Mathilda)

“I see it all perfectly; there are two possible situations — one can either do this or that. My honest opinion and my friendly advice is this: do it or do not do it — you will regret both.”
(Søren Kierkegaard, Either/Or: A Fragment of Life)

“Why was life so unsatisfying? (…) Each smile hid a yawn of boredom, each joy a curse, each pleasure its own disgust; and the sweetest kisses only left on one’s lips a hopeless longing for a higher ecstasy.”
(Madame Bovary, Gustave Flaubert)

Picture found here. March 1995. ‘What makes a good finale? Gowns that look just as good on the way out.’

Picture: untitled by christanoelle.tumblr.com on Flickr.

Picture by Alex Murison, found here.

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Photo by Elisabeth Novick, 1970.

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A Meandering Path: A walk in the desert, Willwood Badlands, Wyoming

by riverwindphotography, March 2017

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Alexandra Spencer by Sybil Steele for Spell Designs February/March 2016

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Thay Temple-  Hanoi, Vietnam 

farandaway.com

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My Inspiration for July 2022

31 Jul

This July I was into the Rust Belt, mostly through reading Anne Trubek’s collection of essay by different authors called “Voices from the Rust Belt” and Springsteen’s songs, floral print facades, horror films such as “It” (2017), “Creep” (2014) and “It Follows” (2014) and novels such as Stephen King’s Pet Sematary which I found particularly fascinating, the idea behind it especially, Charles Burchfield’s watercolour of strange, creepy buildings, Emil Nolde’s paintings of vibrant flowers, Edward Hopper’s paintings of lonely streets, acoustic version of the song “Joey” by Concrete Blonde which is very emotional, passionate and raw. I read two fascinating books that give a great analysis and commentary on the situation in the modern western world regarding GenZ especially; “iGen: Why Today’s Super-Connected Kids Are Growing Up Less Rebellious by Jean M. Twenge and “I find that offensive” by Claire Fox.

“I am solitary as grass.
What is it I miss?
Shall I ever find it, whatever it is?”
(Sylvia Plath)

“It’s funny. I used to daydream about being old enough to go out on dates, driving around with my friends in their cars. I had this image of myself, holding hands with a really cute guy, listening to the radio, driving along some pretty road, up north maybe, and the trees start to change colors. It was never about going anywhere really. Just having some sort of freedom I guess. Now that we’re old enough, where the hell do we go?”
-It Follows (2014)

Romeo and Juliet mural, Shoreditch

This mural marks the site of original Shakespearean theatre and where Romeo and Juliet was first performed. It is unlike the typical street art found in Shoreditch, plenty of examples of which can be found on London Edge.

Thomasin McKenzie on set of ‘Last Night in Soho’. Photo by Greg Williams.

Little Castle by Martin
Via Flickr:
Loenen (NL)

Sarah Loven Photography

ig @labohemejulia.

Flower Valley in Himalaya by Samiran Sarkar, found here.

Instagram by elise.buch

Photo by Tom Leighton.

“Storm and Forest” by Samiran Sarkar.

Runaway Bride, Isabeli Fontana by Peter Lindbergh for Vogue Paris April 2012

My Inspiration for June 2022

30 Jun

This June I really enjoyed Georgia O’Keeffe’s simple, meditative and vibrant watercolour, some watercolours by Berthe Morisot and Winslow Homer, some Japanese short stories of which I will write about soon, witchy vibes found in the film “Love Witch” (2016) and the painting “Morgan-le-Fay” (1863-64) by Frederick Sandys which I have included in the selection of pictures bellow…

“No permanence is ours, we are a wave that flows to fit whatever form it finds.”
(Hermann Hesse, The Glass Bead Game)

“Solitude devastates me, company oppresses me.”
(Fernando Pessoa, The Book of Disquiet)

“Maturity is a bitter disappointment for which no remedy exists.”

(Kurt Vonnegut – Cat’s Cradle)

Picture found here.

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Instagram: liberty.mai

Instagram: liberty.mai

untitled by nicolette clara iles on Flickr.

Instagram: sofie.in.wonderland

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My Inspiration for April 2022

30 Apr

“I am still ashamed of myself, afraid to let myself go, to let things pour out of me; I am dreadfully inhibited, and that is because I have not yet learned to accept myself as I am.”

Etty Hillesum, from a diary entry featured in An Interrupted Life: the Diaries, 1941-1943 and Letters from Westerbork (translated from the Dutch by Arnold J. Pomerans)

Jamie Beck (@jamiebeck.co)

Instagram: elise.buch

Picture found here.

Reylia Slaby, Ophelia – Tales from Japan series – Nara, Japan – 2013

Picture found here.

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My Inspiration for February 2022

28 Feb

This month I really enjoyed gazing at the dreamy and magical Oriental illustrations by Edmund Dulac and Warwick Goble, some of my favourites are featured here in this post. My other favourites were the Japanese inspired postcards by Raphael Kirchner. I enjoyed rereading Natsume Soseki’s wonderful, meditative and poetic novel “The Three-Cornered World” and also the poetry of Kobayashi Issa and Tagore. Here is a poem by Issa which struck me the most because it conveys such a lovely image:

“In spring rain

A pretty girl

Yawning.”

(Kobayashi Issa)

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Picture by Laura Makabresku.

Two pictures above found on liberty.mai Instagram.

Yayoi Kusama — Self Portrait  (collage with pastel, ballpoint pen, and ink on paper, 1972)

Picture found here.

Vogue 1971

there… by Jane Ha

My Inspiration for September 2021

30 Sep

This month my favourite things were the amazing, vibrant paintings of horses by the German Expressionist painter Franz Marc, then the delightful illustrations for the Wind in the Willows by Arthur Rackham, Constantin Guy’s watercolours of fancy Parisians and ladies in crinolines, illustrations by Sarah Kay and Hollie Hobby, covers of the Art Nouveau magazine Jugend, and illustrations by Theophile Steinlen. Violin and cello music to colour the crisp autumn air. I am really excited for the colours and richness of autumn this year! As always in late summer and early autumn, there was a bit of nostalgia and trips down memory lanes before I sail my boat into the groovy orange, mauve and crimson waters of October so I rewatched some of my old favourite films such as “Love Witch” (2016) and listened to some of my old favourites such as Bryan Ferry’s 2HB. It’s nice to revisit old favourites but one must be cautious not to sink into the sweetness of memories and miss out on the present and its possibilities.

“That old September feeling, left over from school days, of summer passing, vacation nearly done, obligations gathering, books and football in the air … Another fall, another turned page: there was something of jubilee in that annual autumnal beginning, as if last year’s mistakes had been wiped clean by summer.”

(Wallace Stegner, Angle of Repose)

“I have taken to celebrating the anniversaries of my sensations, the anniversary of something that was delightful at one time, of something that actually never occurred. I am reduced to celebrating anniversaries because I no longer have anything with which to replace even those silly, flimsy dreams. For dreams… have to be renewed too.”
(Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s White Nights)

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Viktor Semenovich Vilner, Embankment, Scenes from Dostoyevsky’s “Crime and Punishment”, 1971

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Picture by Nishe (Magdalena Lutek)

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Picture found on: mireia arpa on Instagram.

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My Inspiration for August 2021

31 Aug

The best book I read this August was Takanobu Ishikawa’s “Romaji Diary” and I have already written a book review about it here. There were passages and thoughts that I found extremely relatable and other parts of the book felt more like dipping my finger into the sea of reverie… My other inspirations are, as you can see from the pictures, many lovely late 1960s and early 1970s fashion pictures, portrayals of circus and the sea in art, the Stone Roses, red colour, I really crave red these days, in art and other places, Pre-Raphaelite art as the gateway to the season that awakens the soul; autumn…

And I feel so lonely and vulnerable and strange…”

(Anne Sexton, from A Self-Portrait In Letters)

“My poor friend could not understand the deep yearning and pain in life. Feeling unbearably lonely, I returned to my room. Ultimately it’s impossible for a man to make another man understand him fully. In the final analysis, camaraderie between one man and another is merely superficial. Realizing that the friend who I had thought understood me as thoroughly as I had him was unable, ultimately, to understand the anguish and pain at the bottom of my heart made me feel unbearably dreary. We are each separate, each alone! This thought left me indescribably sad.”
(Takuboku Ishikawa, Romaji Diary)

John French – Jean Shrimpton for Mary Quant (London 1964)

Picture found here.

 

Mike Berkofsky – Jane Birkin Wearing a Dress by Laura Ashley (19 Magazine 1970)

Picture by Olha Sheludiakova, found here.

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Picture by Marina Marić, found here.

Alexis Waldeck – Donna Mitchell (Status & Diplomat 1967)

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Barry Lategan – Maudie James and Louise Despointes (Vogue UK 1971)

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Ford Abbey and Gardens (by Annie Spratt)

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Found in the Internet Archive by AnitaNH

Dresses from Foale and Tuffin (Woman’s Journal 1971)

Dresses by Colin Glascoe (Woman’s Journal 1971)

By Laura Makabresku.

Picture found here.

Stuart Brown – Models Wearing Pourelle Ensembles (19 Magazine 1969)

My Inspiration for July 2021

31 Jul

These sunny July days I very much enjoyed listening to my old favourite songs by Pearl Jam but also discovered some stuff by Chris Cornell, Soundgarden, and Alice in Chains; especially the hauntingly beautiful live version of “Love, Hate, Love”. I am mildly obsessed with cactuses, both in paintings and in desert scenery, prairie dresses, 1970s Sarah Kay illustrations, vibrant, childlike, colorful paintings by Fauvists, Gauguin’s Tahiti-phase paintings, flower paintings by Georgia O’Keeffe… I got my hands on quite a few fascinating books this month (finally!), amongst them are the recently published and thought-provoking book “Irreversible Damage: The Transgender Craze Seducing Our Daughters” by Abigal Shrier, Uncommon by Owen Hatherley; a book about the band Pulp, their aesthetic, lyrics and place as perpetual outsiders on the music scene, As I crossed a Bridge of Dreams; a wonderful novel written by a court lady in the 11th century Japan, The Bilingual Lover by Juan Marsé; both comical and sad at the same time, The Way to Paradise by Mario Vargas Llosa; a novel which explores the lives of Paul Gauguin and his grandmother Flora Tristan; they both had in common the urge for freedom, and they both tried to break the chains of civilisations, each in their own way. I am also more than half-way through Erich Fromm’s “Escape from Freedom” which is very interesting and especially so in the age we are living in, here are two quotes I enjoyed:

“We are proud that we are not subject to any external authority, that we are free to express our thoughts and feelings, and we take it for granted that this freedom almost automatically guarantees our individuality. The right to express our thoughts, however, means something only if we are able to have thoughts of our own; freedom from external authority is a lasting gain only if the inner psychological conditions are such that we are able to establish our own individuality.”

“Freedom is not less endangered if attacked in the name of anti-Fascism than in that of outright Fascism. This truth has been so forcefully formulated by John Dewey that I express the thought in his words: “The serious threat to our democracy,” he says, “is not the existence of foreign totalitarian states. It is the existence within our own personal attitudes and within our own institutions of conditions which have given a victory to external authority, discipline, uniformity and dependence upon The Leader in foreign countries. The battlefield is also accordingly here—within ourselves and our institutions.”

“The days are long and weigh on me. I am suffocating.”
(Albert Camus, from a letter featured in “A Life Worth Living”, c. 1940)

Sasha Kichigina photographed by Ina Lekiewicz for For Love & Lemons Spring 2020

Instagram: elise.buch

Picture found here.

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Model Ingrid Boulting photographed at Lacock Abbey, “Summer at Source”, by Norman Parkinson for Vogue UK, July 1970

Red Avadat, Red Munia or strawberry finch, picture found here.

Moret-sur-Loing, France (by J.P. Renais)

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A Cactus Garden in California⁣, c. 1902⁣, Source: Beinecke Digital Collections⁣

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Dan Kozan, from Creative Black Book: Photography (1985)

Cuba, picture found here.

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Miss Moda 2020 in Elle Mexico December 2019 by Dennis Tejero

Towers with Faces at the Bayon Temple, Angkor wat complex, Cambodia. Picture found here.

Red and White Campion Meadow & Wild Campion Meadow
by Alan MacKenzie

My Inspiration for March 2021

31 Mar

My biggest inspiration this month (and discovery) was Santoka Taneda; a Japanese haiku writer who led a fascinating life and wrote Zen poetry, and also my old favourite Vincent van Gogh: his art, his letters, and Irving Stone’s novel “Lust for Life”. As I am writing this, bright yellow daffodils are smiling to me from their vase and from my window I see the clouds, the skies, the treetops, I hear the birdsong; they all call me to join them and I shall. Enjoy the beautiful pictures!

“There were so many things we feared. And we shouldn’t have. We should have lived.”

(Ivo Andrić)

“Today my path was wonderful. I wanted to shout out to the mountains, the sea, and the sky. The sound of the waves, the birds, the pure water–I’m grateful for everything. The sun shone brightly and the number of pilgrims increases daily. The memorials, the bridges, the shrines, and the cliffs were so beautiful. My rice was like food from heaven.”

(from Santoka Taneda’s diary)

Beautiful watercolour by  李淡淡 .

Picture by i.Anton ☂.

Quote from “Sputnik Sweetheart”, by Haruki Murakami

Picture found here.

Lucia Heffernan – Field Wishes, 2020